Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) on Wednesday announced a long-term partnership to 'elevate the performance of Indian athletes, support the national sports federations, and build the credentials of the country as a global sporting power', with an aspiration to host the Olympic Games in the future.
As part of this partnership, RIL and IOA will also establish the first-ever India House at the Paris Olympics 2024.
As IOA's Principal Partner, RIL will support Indian athletes in major multi-sport events, including the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and the Olympics. In addition, the Olympic hospitality houses are a Games tradition, and India's first Olympic House at the Paris Olympics will be a historic milestone.
Establishing this home away from home and showcasing India to the world at the pinnacle event of world sport is yet another example of RIL's commitment to the Olympic movement.
International Olympic Committee (IOC) Member and RIL Director Nita M Ambani said, "It is our dream to see India take centre stage on the global sporting arena. Our partnership with the IOA reinforces the Reliance Foundation's deep commitment to supporting and empowering young athletes across the country with world-class infrastructure and opportunities."
"We are also very excited to host the first-ever India House at the Paris Olympic Games in 2024. It will be a great opportunity to showcase India's immense talent, potential, and aspiration to the world," she added.
Meanwhile, IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta said, "I thank Reliance Industries and Mrs Nita Ambani for this partnership with the Indian Olympic Association and for their continued support over the years for Indian sports and inspiring the next generation of children to join the Olympic movement. It will be a momentous occasion to have an India House at Paris 2024. This is a giant step in reiterating India's commitment to the Olympic Movement."
In the run-up to the Paris Olympics, India will also host the 140th IOC Session in June 2023 at the state-of-the-art Jio World Centre in Mumbai.
The IOC Session, which will coincide with the nationwide celebrations of the 75th year of Independence, will highlight the role of sport in India and celebrate the country's contribution to the Olympic Movement.
In May 2022, India's first 'Olympic Values Education Programme' (OVEP) was launched in Odisha. It combines the twin powers of education and sport in instilling the core values of Olympism.
The OVEP is a practical set of resources designed by the IOC to introduce young people to the Olympic values of excellence, respect, and friendship. The programme aims at disseminating this values-based curriculum to help children become active, healthy and responsible citizens.
Incidentally, nations from across the world strengthen their Olympic Movement involvement during the Olympic Games with the official Olympic Hospitality House, which gives fans and travellers a vision and an understanding of the country and also serves as an avenue to engage officials, sportspeople and their families and the public.
At the 2016 Rio Olympics, more than 50 nations had set up their country-specific Hospitality House, bringing to the Games a combination of each respective country's cultural and sporting history. The Paris Olympics will have India's first such house.